Thanks for the Lessons

While some people open up easier than others, I truly believe that if you give people a chance they’re probably going to teach you something – or at least confirm something that you only “sorta kinda” knew, but perhaps need to more deeply engrain in your psyche…

For this week’s musings, I’m going to get a bit nostalgic with y’all and share some of my favourite lessons from a few of the interesting people who have kindly shared a little piece of themselves with me. Continue reading

A Victim’s Logo

“Of all the parts of your body, be most vigilant over your index finger, for it is blame-thirsty. A pointed finger is a victim’s logo… No matter how abominable your condition may be, try not blame anything or anybody: history, the state, superiors, race, parents, the phase of the moon, childhood, toilet training, etc… The moment that you blame somewhere, you undermine your resolve to change anything.” – Joseph Brodsky. Continue reading

The Paradox of Our Time (Meh).

“Have we all become so isolated, so lacking in social connection, so busy staring into our devices, that we’re forced into a relationship with a disembodied algorithm? Is that humanity’s final chapter?”

These are some of the questions posed in a recent SMH column, by a writer I’m quite fond of (although don’t know personally). But I don’t agree with everything he says, and on this particular matter my thoughts are, “Who the heck cares?” Here’s a unique and controversial idea – what if we just take care of our own business? Continue reading

Swanee’s ‘Fortunate’ Life

First published in Orange City Life 13 July 2017.

OAM John “Swanee” Swan’s rock music career has spanned many decades, with jaunts of booze, drugs, love and loss – overcoming his own demons to help others.

Musician John “Swanee” Swan made a name for himself in the music industry playing in a number of bands including Adelaide group Fraternity, and replacing his good friend Angry Anderson in the Party Boys, ushering their most successful period. He appeared with Cold Chisel from time to time providing backing vocals and percussion, until he was fired for “punching a roadie”. He was considered as Bon Scott’s replacement in AC/DC after Bon died from alcohol poisoning in 1980, but Swanee says it’s a good thing it didn’t transpire. “Bon was my drinking buddy! If I had’ve joined AC/DC they would have had another drunk as a singer. And why would you put them through that again?” Continue reading

The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman

I can’t say for sure what prompted me to read Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane, although I do believe it was a combination of two factors: first, I was impressed by the speech Neil gave at an Arts University back in 2012. You know how these famous writers are – they put on a black robe and a silly little hat (google tells me those hats are called mortarboards) and then they start saying incredibly inspirational things. Secondly, a friend told me how much he loved the book, describing it as “a children’s book for adults”. The description sounded bloody awful, but intriguing. Continue reading

An Ordinary Day

“Jack Pines are not lumber trees and they won’t win many beauty contests either. But to me this valiant old tree, solitary on its own rocky point, is as beautiful as a living thing can be. In the calligraphy of its shape against the sky is written strength of character and perseverance, survival of wind, drought, cold, heat, disease… In its silence it speaks of wholeness, an integrity that comes from being what you are.” – Douglas Wood. Continue reading